A few weeks back I provided this prompt for the prompt-ly listserv, so it’s about time I follow up with my own blog post . After careful consideration I knew I had to write about two fictional characters. The first one should come as no surprise, if you have been reading this blog in the last two years.
If you have been following this blog for the last two years you will have noticed that I am a huge fan of the “Outlander” novel series, written by Diana Gabaldon. You only have to check the tags on the right side column to find the various posts I wrote about it :)
“Outlander” was first published 20 years ago and there will be a super special 20th Anniversary Edition. Karen from the wonderful blog “Outlandish Observations” decided to have a contest in celebration of this occasion. The prize is a copy of the 20th Anniverary edition, signed by Diana Gabaldon herself. The contest rules require a short description of what “Outlander” means to you. Of course I couldn’t pass up this opportunity to once more share with the world, why “Outlander” is my favourite novel series. The following is my contest entry, keep your fingers crossed for me :-) Continue reading
I updated the „I’ve watched” page on this blog on Friday and thought I’d do a short review of all the TV series I’ve so far watched this year. [I also for a short moment considered writing a „this and that happened in my life recently” post, but it’s all so ordinary and boring and … well, I’ve watched a lot of TV series recently, so mayb that’s why nothing extraordinary happened.] Anyway, a short review in alphabetical order.
Brothers & Sisters: Up until this last season (which turned out to actually be the last season of the show) I really liked this show. I had fun following the Walkers through their lives and I overlooked a lot of far-fetched storylines. But in 2010/11 the writing really went down the drain. Seriously, I was convinced that there was crack being handed around the writer’s room, because the writing was sooooo bad. I stopped watching after the first few episodes but friends told me the show got less bad later on, so I joined in again. There was still a lot of crap, but there also were nice and cute stories, and I didn’t want to abandon the Walkers after all these years. I think ABC was right to not bring the show back for another season though.
….some are the melody and some are the beat…”
There are these songs you think you know well, because you have heard them so many, many times. But then some day you realize you obviously never have really listened to it. Well, honestly right now I’m talking just about one song, with which this happened to me recently. „Forever Young” by Alphaville. It’s a classic song from the 80s, lots of synthesizer, lots of drum machine and a video which is typical 80s and therefore pretty bad :-) But it was one of the many songs that were played at parties and clubs and discos in the early 90s, when I started going out and dancing. I was partying and singing along to this song’s chorus more often than I can remember.
My most favourite singer/songwriter at the moment – Brandi Carlile – has done a cover version of this song. She obviously is doing it on stage a lot and it’s the hidden track on the Live Album (with a symphony orchestra) she released just a few weeks ago. On youtube I found a clip from another concert and Brandi puts it perfectly in her introduction: „I realized it is not a bad 80s song, it’s a wonderful song with heartbreaking lyrics and I think we can all relate to it so I wanted to a version of it without the digitized drum machine.”
And Brandi’s version completely blew me away. Because for the first time ever I actually listened to the lyrics of the whole song and the lyrics are indeed heartbreaking. Add Brandi’s incredible voice, piano and cello and you’ve got a song that is tugging on my heart strings every time I’m listening to it. And believe me I am listening to it a lot.
Someone put up the song on youtube (just the audio, obviously) so you can check it out yourself, if you like.
Brandi Carlile – Forever Young (Live at Benaroya Hall, 2010)
I don’t exactly remember when I bought Sunrise Avenue’s first album. It must have been sometime in 2007, because when I switched hosting service for my blog and decided to write solely in English in April 2008 I obviously already owned and loved the album. I don’t really remember if I had considered any other title for this blog and I actually remember that I had once written a short piece somewhere why I had chosen this title. I don’t find that text anywhere though, maybe I deleted it from the „About me” page some time later for reasons unknown. I thought I could easily link to this explanation now, but I guess I’ll have to write it down all over again. I don’t mind though :-)
I had planned writing two posts this weekend. One about what I’m giving up (or not giving up) for Lent this year and one about my status of health and future medical treatment and all. The one which I wanted to write ever since I made up my mind to start this treatment as making up my mind took me long enough.
But then the earthquake hit Japan and all the terrible things that happened, are happening and will happen keep my mind too occupied to sit down and write long and detailed posts about my ordinary life. It feels so insignificant. The magnitude of the events in Japan is almost impossbile to grasp. It seems impossible to fully understand what happened there and how the Japanese people must feel right now. It seems too unreal even though we see the footage of the wave tearing down everything and even though we see the explosion at the nuclear plant over and over again, because every news station is showing it over and over again. As if running it on repeat would make it even more real. I don’t know… I’m at loss for words.
I’m in this weird state of mind where on the one hand I want to stay up-to-date with the latest news all day long and on the other hand feel the need to escape the grim reality by reading a novel or watching a DVD. That worked pretty well for a couple of hours last night, when my friend came over and we watched the “Same Same, But Different” and “The Jane Austen Book Club”. The latter almost makes me want to grab my “Pride & Prejudice” DVD and watch that movie again. I’ve decided to give “Downton Abbey” a try first though.
My inner tv/movie junkie seems to be drawn to stories from those centuries, where machines were powered by steam or coal or oil at the most. No wonder, is it?
Just for the record: I used to give up choclate for Lent since 2004, but this year I need all the chocolate I can get to keep me sane. Not because of recent events in Japan, but because of stress at work and other crap and big stuff on my mind (health, treatment and all). There is no way I can give up chocolate this year.
I will try to cut back on my internet time in the late evenings during the week instead. I tend to spend too much time online being unproductive, just passing time with rather random and useless stuff. I don’t have a distinct rule like which hour I want to turn off the computer, but I’m determined to turn it off earlier than usual. It’s not like the blogs, news sites, mails, tweets will all have disappeared the next day, because they won’t. The internet will still be here in the morning… but sometimes I know I act like it wouldn’t be.
I bought the first book of the Thursday Next novel series sometime in 2007, I think. I didn’t read it until the christmas/new year holiday 2009/2010 and then spent the first weeks of 2010 reading the remaining books of this series and totally loved it. It’s so difficult to describe what it’s all about. It’s comic fantasy, which is such a far cry from the usual fantasy a la Tolkien and such. It’s equally imaginative, but in a much more playful and hilariously funny kind of way.
I tried to sum up what it’s all about in a few words, because I want to share some of my favourite lines/moments from this story and it’s impossible to understand what’s funny about it without a general idea what the Thursday Next series is about. I failed to come up with a decent summary of the whole Thursday Next Universe though.